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Israel cuts ties between Spanish Consulate in Jerusalem, Palestinians in occupied West Bank

Anadolu Agency MIDDLE EAST
Published May 24,2024
Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz (AA Photo)

Israel on Friday has severed ties between the Spanish Consulate in Jerusalem and Palestinians from the occupied West Bank.

In a statement, Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz said that "in response to Spain's recognition of a Palestinian state and the anti-Semitic call by Spain's deputy prime minister to not just recognize a Palestinian state but to 'liberate Palestine from the river to the sea,' I have decided to sever the connection between Spain's representation in Israel and the Palestinians."

Katz added that he has also decided to "prohibit the Spanish Consulate in Jerusalem from providing services to Palestinians from the West Bank."

"If this ignorant, hate-filled individual wants to understand what radical Islam truly seeks, she should study the 700 years of Islamic rule in Al-Andalus—today's Spain," he added.

This action follows Spain's recognition of a Palestinian state and remarks by Spanish deputy prime minister, who called for the "liberation of Palestine from the river to the sea."

Deputy Premier Yolanda Diaz's comments came on Thursday at the end of a social media video where she explained Spain's move to recognize Palestinian statehood on May 28 is just the beginning.

Israel has never resorted to such a measure, including when Sweden recognized Palestine in October 2014.

While the embassies in Tel Aviv specialize in providing services to Israelis, the general consulates in East Jerusalem specialize in providing services to the Palestinians and political relations.

Spain, Norway, and Ireland announced on Wednesday their decision to recognize the State of Palestine.

The recognition comes as Israel continued its brutal offensive on the Gaza Strip since Oct. 7, 2023 despite a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire in the enclave.

At least 35,800 Palestinians have been killed, the vast majority of whom have been women and children, and 80,200 others injured since last October following an attack by the Palestinian group Hamas.

More than seven months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine.

Israel is accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice, which has ordered it to ensure that its forces do not commit acts of genocide and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.